Jean-Adam Guilain [Johan Adam Wilhelm Freinsburg]

(ca 1680 - ca 1739)

Organist, harpsichordist and composer, born in Germany, but his musical style is pure French; he was mostly active in Paris during the first half of the eighteenth century. Little is known about his life. He was born in Germany, possibly around 1680 (the exact dates of birth and death are unknown). For an unknown reason he moved to France some time before 1702, and almost certainly became one of Louis Marchand's pupils - Guilain's organ collection is dedicated to Marchand, by then a prominent organ teacher. Guilain died some time after 1739, the year when he published a collection of harpsichord pieces. A unique copy may be found in the collection of the British Library. The volume is entitled "Pièces De Clavecin D'un Gout Nouveau Par Mr. Guilain." The 26 pieces of this anthology, whose quality leaves a lot to be desired, carry some rather cryptic titles: Fanfare - Je veux Garder - Le Beau B.T. - Amis - Ton H.C. - Babé L.R. - Joconde - Mirtil - Mon Cousin - Tircis Couché - Ma Cloris - L'autre jour - Mamy Margot - O Gué - Pierre B.- Les Pelerins 1er Air - 2e Air - Boire a son tour - je suis encor - Bransle de Metz - On dit - Allons - La Têtard - Menuet Allemand. A single collection of organ pieces (Pièces d'orgue pour le Magnificat sur les huit tons différents de l'église) was published in 1706 in two volumes, of which only one is now extant. The full collection included eight suites of pieces for use with the Magnificat, one suite for each church mode. Each suite contained seven short movements that were to alternate with the vocal parts of the liturgy.

A Partial Jean-Adam Guilain Discography |  VIID: Chamber and Keyboard Music up to Rameau | The Research Periods | Home

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